SEATTLE (AP) — Bruce Leven, a self-made businessman whose sports car race teams won the Twelve Hours of Sebring three times in the 1980s, has died at 79.

Leven died Sept. 15 at his home in Seattle after a long bout with cancer, according to his son, Michael Leven.

As a driver, Bruce Leven surrounded himself with international stars that led to the success of his privately held Bayside Disposal Racing team, including victories at Sebring in 1981, 1987, and 1988. Those drivers included Peter Gregg, Hurley Haywood, Al Holbert, Scott Pruett, Hans Stuck, and Bob Wollek, who competed in the IMSA GT series in Porsche 935s and 962s, and Dominic Dobson and Jeff Andretti in Lola open-wheel racers in the CART Indy Car series.

Leven's best season in racing was 1987 when his team earned six wins, with drivers Jochen Mass and Bobby Rahal finishing third and fifth in the IMSA championship despite entering only half the races. Three-time Le Mans winner Klaus Ludwig also contributed with a solo win of his own.

Leven disbanded his racing team in the 1990s and turned his attention back to business, founding the Bayside Automotive Group in Seattle.

Leven is survived by four children and nine grandchildren. There are no memorial services scheduled.